Hope.

Spring is springing and suddenly it is cold.  Frost clings to the bright green buds and frustrated kids run to the car with their breath hanging in clouds around their faces.

This is not what we expected.

The bright sun is deceptive.  One step outside and we are driven back to grab a sweater and the youngest one whines, “It’s COLD, Mom.”

Yep.  That it is.

We saw snowflakes last night on the first day of Spring and not one of my five children was happy about it.  Why?  Because our minds have shifted and we have been in full-on shorts and flip-flop mode for a solid two weeks.  No one likes to backtrack to Winter.

Holy Week has begun and, though the stores are filled with flowers and bunnies and chicks,the cold has most likely driven the real critters inside for shelter.

But maybe this isn’t a bad thing.

My focus, during this Lenten season, has been off at best.  The busyness of life and kids and sports and homeschooling and allergies and therapies has made focusing on what I intended to focus on very difficult.  I lie in bed, intending to open my Bible, and find myself scrolling mindlessly through Facebook.  I fell asleep once this past week and my phone nearly hit me in the face.

How embarrassing.

I did not grow up observing Lent.  Easter was about bunnies and eggs and candy, never about Jesus.  When I accepted Him as my Savior at the age of 21 it changed everything and holidays took on new life.

But this year, during this season of Lent, I have felt cold.

Distractions have threatened my intimacy with God and I am saddened at the wasted time that I will never, ever be able to get back.

So this week, I am going to search for the warmth.  In the midst of an unexpected winter, I am going to walk forward and remember that Spring is here, even in the cold.

The flowers are blooming, even in the cold.

The sun is shining, even in the cold.

God is our shelter from the cold.

Let’s hunker down and let Him cover us with His warmth.  Let’s turn off the screens and open the real, crinkly pages of our Bibles.  Let’s focus on this season, this week, and what it meant for all of us…how the long-ago sacrifice of Jesus STILL saves just like it did that first day after He rose from the dead.  Let’s put our hope in Him once again, remembering the joy and wonder of our salvation.

Let’s go to our Father and find warmth and comfort and purpose and HOPE.

Yes, hope.  Because without the empty tomb we would have none.

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